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April 12, 2021

New Support for Testing HDMI 2.1 Cables and Switchers

AVPro reports that they have upgraded their physical layer and protocol test gear to support Certified HDMI 2.1 cable and switch testing. HDMI 2.1 connectivity is needed to support 8K at 60 frames per second.   Both passive and optical HDMI cables can be tested.  Certification on these HDMI 2.1 cables is a big deal as the tests are quite rigorous and are designed to ensure transport per the specification.  Some HDMI 2..1 cables are not Certified and the HDMI Forum frowns on these products.

Testing of cables and switches can be done at the factory to certify compliance or in the field to do troubleshooting.

According to AVPro’s Matt Murray, they recently added the Wilder HDMI 2.1 Certified test Suite software on the Keysight DSOX92004A oscilloscope with N7010A probe adapters.  They have their own test generators (using a Vertex FPGA) with the cable inserted between the generator and Oscilloscope.  Their transmitter test includes validating all four data channels allowing a comparison with the generated signal.

av pro eye chart

For HDMI 2.1 protocol testing they use an Teledyne Lecroy 980B Protocol Analyzer that has been upgraded to now support FRL (Fixed Rate Link) and DSC (Display Stream, Compression) testing. “We test the switchers in this way generating a known signal and test the physical layer and protocol on the output.,” said Murray.

AVPro Global Holdings is a global manufacturer of connectivity solutions for integrators and content creators.  Their properties include Murideo for test, measurement and calibration hardware, AVPro Edge for HDMI connectivity and distribution and Bullet Train for HDMI and USB Cables for 8K transmission. In addition, they provide educational content to the commercial and residential install community along with other vertical markets.

“Interoperability of equipment in the early days of 4K was an issue we had to deal with,” notes Murray.  “We see the same need for 8K equipment which is why we try to do as much interop testing we can to help our customers have a better experience,” explained Murray.  “That is not as important with cables but it is with matrix switchers. That’s why we try to test with “real” sources (XBOX, PS5, NVIDIA 3090) and “real” displays (LG NANO 99, OLED77ZX, and Sony Z9). We also have a bunch of GX/CX OLED TVs for 120/VRR/free sync testing.”